The Washington Stage Guild continues its 27th season with the area premiere of TRYST by Karoline Leach. Tryst is set in 1912, England - the same setting as the Stage Guild's last hit production, George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion. But while both plays deal with the sparks that fly when a man presumes to exploit a young woman for his own purposes, Tryst is a suspenseful cat-and-mouse game where it's not always clear who is the cat and who the mouse. Based on the true story of the mysterious Mr. George Love, Tryst was a West End hit in 1997, and had successful New York runs in both 2006 and 2011, but has never been produced in the DC area until now.
"It's always a pleasure to present a contemporary work that so neatly fits in with the Stage Guild's aesthetic, a witty and verbally deft fencing match between two people who are more than they appear on the surface," says Artistic Director Bill Largess. "That Tryst gives us a look at Pygmalion's 1912 in a very different hue has a fascinating appeal. Dark and suspenseful, the play keeps us guessing until the final moment, and perhaps beyond! And to present it with the company debuts of three wonderful artists - Kasi Campbell, Emily Townley, and Felipe Cabezas - is very exciting. We're especially happy to have Kasi join us after admiring her work for so long."
"I recently have directed many plays with actors playing multiple characters," says director Kasi Campbell, "so I was very attracted to this piece that allows the audience to spend such an intimate and psychologically gripping time with only two characters locked in a dance of pursuit and surrender." Ms. Campbell is no stranger to the Washington Area Theatre Scene; in fact, her local productions have garnered 31 Helen Hayes nominations (including four for Outstanding Director, two for Outstanding Production and two for Outstanding Ensemble) and 7 Helen Hayes Awards (received Outstanding Director Award in 2004). Of the 34 productions she has mounted locally, some favorites include The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia?, Yellowman, Arcadia, Travels with My Aunt, The Dazzle, God's Ear, In the Heart of America, Bach at Leipzig, Hamlet, The Seagull, The Violet Hour, Faith Healer, The Mystery of Irma Vep, The Lonesome West, The Judas Kiss, The Swan, Translations, Kimberly Akimbo, Neville's Island, Da, Jeffrey and The Road to Mecca.
Also making their Stage Guild debut are Emily Townley as Adelaide Pinchin and Felipe Cabezas as the mysterious Mr. Love. Emily Townley has worked as an actress in the DC area for over 15 years and is a company member at Woolly Mammoth Theatre where roles include Pauline in A Bright New Boise (co-starring Felipe Cabezas), Woman in House of Gold, Lizzie in Maria/Stuart, Barbara in Spain, Heidi in Fuddy Meers, various roles in Wonder of the World and Marilyn in Watbanaland. Other area credits include Studio Theatre: (Candida) Rock n' Roll, (Joyce Murray) The Bright and Bold Design; Rep Stage: (Stevie) The Goat, or Who is Sylvia? (directed by Kasi Campbell); Everyman Theatre: (Mrs. Gibbs) Our Town; MetroStage: (Cynthia) The Real Inspector Hound; Round House Theatre: (Martine) The Sisterhood; Folger Shakespeare Theatre: (Ariel) The Tempest, (Alpiew) The Gaming Table.
Felipe Cabezas was last in Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo (Round House Theatre) and A Bright New Boise (Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company) Other roles include All's Well That Ends Well (Commonwealth Shakespeare Company), The Alchemist (Shakespeare Theatre Company), Women Beware Women (Constellation Theatre Company) and Beyond the Horizon (American Century Theater).
Kirk Kristlibas, who designed the sets for the Stage Guild's Pygmalion, turns his talents to costuming, and Jie Yu, who designed the setting for Magic at the Stage Guild, returns to do the setting. Marianne Meadows returns as Lighting Designer along with Arthur Nordlie as Stage Manager.
TRYST by Karoline Leach is presented in the DC premiere of the Off-Broadway hit where profit and loss weigh heavily on the course of true love, directed by Kasi Campbell and running January 3 through January 27, 2013. Press night is Saturday, January 5, 2013 at 8 pm.